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Archive for May, 2013

God will not coerce us to go His way. He will not force us. Yet, when we walk with Him, we are guaranteed fullness in life, along with a peace, that can be experienced in no other way.

Pastor Bill

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When we go through life with God, He blesses. When we go the other way, we will pay an extreme price.

Pastor Bill

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There is no such thing as "spiritual retirement" spoken of in Scripture.

Pastor Bill

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THE WHIZZER

Last week I shared about my older brother, Stan. I don’t have a multitude of memories about him because I was just too young when he enlisted in the Army and left home. But there is one particular day that is carved into my memory that I doubt I will ever forget—for good reasons and some not so good!

It all had to do with a Whizzer. You noticed that is spelled with a capital W. I am not sure if the Whizzer was a family machine or if it might have belonged to Stan. I remember him riding it often, and my older sister was also on it fairly frequently. A Whizzer was a brand of a motorbike. It was like a bicycle and even had pedals that you worked to get you going, and get the little single-cylinder engine operating so you could sit back, relax and enjoy the ride.

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The photo is not one of “our” Whizzer, but came off the Internet. It appears to be quite similar to the one that I watched members of our family ride. The company that built the Whizzer started out selling engines and kits so a person could attach them to a bicycle. Then, later during the 1940’s, they began selling the complete deal with a bike and the engine already attached to it. From what I have learned about it, the gas tank held 5 quarts of fuel, and some models had engines of 3 hp, that could reach speeds up to 40 mph. In 1948 the company started selling the Pacemaker, which sold for $199.95.

I don’t have any idea which model of Whizzer may have graced the front porch of our home, but the photo above sure seems to be familiar when compared with the recollections I have in the deep recesses of my mind. In any case, it was the Whizzer that helped “burn” the memory of one particular day into my brain!

Stan was at home. I am guessing he hadn’t gone off to the Army just yet, and he had a job in a small sawmill a few miles outside of town. On one particular day, when he was off work, he was riding the Whizzer around, enjoying the bright sunshine of a summer day. When he came by the house I no doubt began to pester him for a ride on the Whizzer, and being the good older brother that he was, he agreed to take me for a spin with him. He picked me off the ground and set me atop the fuel tank, since there was only a seat for a single rider, and showed me how to lean over the tank and hang onto the handle bars. He gave a shove and began to pedal and within a matter of seconds the engine was racing and so were we. Oh, man! I was really living. In a minute or two I am sure I was grinning from ear-to-ear and my eyes were blurred from the tears streaming back on each side of my face from the wind. Yes, this was living! This was the kind of thing big brothers were made for, let me tell you! I had decided that it was a great thing for a young boy to have a big brother.

Psalm 133, in the Old Testament, begins with these word: “How wonderful and pleasant it is when brothers live together in harmony!”

I certainly would have agreed with that as Stan and I went barreling along the dirt and gravel roads, as we headed out of town. It is a great thing when family members are able to get along. Not every family is so fortunate, and sometimes it has to be worked at; but it’s worth it.

Prayer: Father, thank you for the positive memories so many of us have of our growing up years. Thank you for the blessing of brothers and sisters so many of us are able to enjoy. Yes, thank You, Lord. In Jesus’ Name I pray. Amen.

Pastor Bill

 

 

Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright 1996, 2004. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Wheaton, Illinois 60189. All rights reserved.

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Don’t be content with a "stationary" spiritual life. Move ahead. Grow. Go forward with Christ!

Pastor Bill

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Why did the Nation of Israel spend so long in the wilderness? They had a hard time letting go of Egypt. It seems they did not really want to let go. They kept looking back over their shoulders. There is a lesson for all Christians in this story. It might be well for us to think about it on occasion.

Pastor Bill

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One of the most valuable exercises you can do on occasion, is to stop, look back over your life since you became a Christian, and remember the things God has done for you. Such an exercise is a faith-builder!

Pastor Bill

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Place your confidence in God, not men, and allow Him to carry your burdens and take your worries. He wants to do that for you!

Pastor Bill

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Many times in my writings over the years I have referred to my younger brother, and occasionally my older sister. It was between the two of them that most of my memories of growing up appeared to reside. It seemed as if I was always hearing comments from my mother about my brother being “too young for that,” or my sister being “too old for this.” My kid brother was too young and my sister was too old for whatever plans I might have had in mind. That kind of an attitude on the part of my mother left me in a very perplexing situation, you understand. Oh, life was frustrating for me at times!

In any case, I am not sure that I have mentioned there was actually another member of our family. He was an older brother—still is for that matter—and old enough that I don’t remember much about him during my growing up years. He was even older than my older sister, and so I don’t recall him being around the home much when I was very young.

I do remember when Stan joined the Army and left our little country town for faraway places—places that I had only heard about on the radio or listened to my parents talk about. He was setting out to enjoy a multitude of brand new and exciting experiences. I think I was more than a little envious and I couldn’t believe the way my mother behaved when he left. You would have thought the world was about to end! Andy and I could not understand the reason for all the white hankies and tears. Oh, well.

But then Stan came home on leave, in his spiffy new Army uniform, and I was downright green with envy for all the attention directed his way. My word! Everyone who came around was having fits over him, telling him how sharp he looked, and he seemed to be the center of attention whenever there were more than two or three people present. My younger brother, Andy, and I probably had to find our comfort by seeking out a good piece of dirt out in the yard to get into and play around in with our little toy cars and trucks. No one was paying any attention to us with that uniform around, let me tell you!

All too soon, though, Stan was gone again. At some point in his military service my parents received news from Stan that he was going to Germany. My mother seemed to think that was worse than when he had originally left town for the Army. That was in the days before the Internet, email, Skype, etc. In fact, we didn’t even have our own telephone. And an airmail stamp cost 6 cents, or thereabouts, if I remember correctly. Mom probably wondered if she would ever see her boy again. But she still had Andy and me, wouldn’t you know! It just seemed that, at least for a time, our older brother was receiving an unusual amount of attention. Hardly seemed fair, at the time, to a young boy like me.

As we get older, though, opinions and ideas surely do change. I am reminded of a verse in the New Testament Book of Hebrews that makes quite a statement about brothers—and sisters, for that matter: Keep on loving each other as brothers and sisters. Don’t forget to show hospitality to strangers, for some who have done this have entertained angels without realizing it! . . . . . .(Hebrews 13:1-2)

In reading through the Bible I get the idea that brothers and sisters were to be important to each other—even “loving each other,” which might seem pretty strong to some folks. But I have always felt it was good to be in a family where there were several kids to grow up around each other. Oh, the others could be a real headache to a young boy at times, but I always seemed to get over it quickly. And my parents actually made it clear that we were all equally important in their eyes, no matter what I may have thought at times. And Mom and Dad were examples when it came to loving brothers and sisters. I am at an age where I appreciate that now.

I am intrigued that the next sentence after the one about loving your siblings talks about the possibility that you might be interacting with an angel if you show hospitality to a stranger. Does that mean your brother or sister aren’t? Angels, I mean. I think I will write about that some other time!

Prayer: Father, thank you for those of us who have brothers and/or sisters that we had the experience of growing up with. Thank you for allowing us to be part of our earthly families. Thank you for the older siblings so many of us have who influenced our lives in positive ways. Yes, thank You. In Jesus’ Name I pray, amen.

 

Pastor Bill

 

Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright 1996, 2004. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Wheaton, Illinois 60189. All rights reserved.

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Get in the habit of maintaining an attitude of confidence in God.

Pastor Bill

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